New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie turned his birthday political fundraiser into a love-fest with former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, stoking visions of a potential Christie-Romney GOP ticket in 2016.
“Wouldn’t our country be in a hell of a better place if this man was running it?” Mr. Christie asked, referring to Mr. Romney, the GOP’s 2012 presidential nominee who condemned President Obama’s handling of foreign policy.
“The president doesn’t know quite what to do,” Mr. Romney said adding, “I’ve got to tell you. I’m proud to be on stage with a man who knows what to do.”
While Mr. Romney continues to reject rumors that he is contemplating a third run for president, Mr. Christie toyed with the idea during his remarks.
“There’s lots of people, lots of people who are saying now, ‘Well geez what’s gonna be next for the governor? What’s gonna be next?’” Mr. Christie said.
But as soon as he mentioned the idea of a possible run in 2016 he quickly batted it away saying, “I’ll tell you what’s next is, tomorrow morning, I will wake up, get dressed and go to work in the greatest job I could ever have possibly dreamed of, and that’s to be the governor of the state where I was born and raised.”
However, Mr. Christie alluded to the future while defending his travel obligations as the chairman of the Republican Governors Association.
“Don’t ever think – not for a minute – when I’m traveling around the country helping other Republican governors, traveling around the world trying to bring jobs back to New Jersey for out citizens – don’t ever think for a minute that I’m distracted or disinterested by what my main job is,” he said.
U.S. News and World Report reported that in his remarks, Mr. Christie focused largely on national and foreign policy issues rather than his statewide accomplishments, seemingly testing the crowd’s reactions.
According to the Wall Street Journal Mr. Christie and Mr. Romney raised over $600,000 for New Jersey Republicans at Wednesday night’s event to celebrate Mr. Christie’s 52nd birthday.